The last few days have been strange, to say the least.
I came to DC 10 years ago as a younger idealist. I got a job at the National Park Service headquarters working in a program to help economically disadvantaged youth learn job skills and get jobs in the conservation arena. This was a program heavily supported by the Clinton administration. It was a collaborative venture between the Department of the Interior and the Department of Labor.
This was a great job and gave me insight and exposure to an initiative that given breathing room, can succeed to improve the lives of the less fortunate.
Kids that normally might get shut out of the game were given an opportunity to acquire important vocational skills making them more marketable for the world they would soon enter into.
When Clinton left, Bush was elected and 9/11 happened. The world, the state of idealism and the direction of our country changed. Perhaps it changed out of necessity, perhaps not. History will judge whether this be the case.
Somewhere within this time period the program lost support and momentum.
I left and went into other worlds. Running took up some of the void and became a passion.
Monday morning(MLK day) as I was driving to meet the guys for a run, I listened to Martin Luther King Jr on the radio. He was making a sermon right before he was killed. He was talking about helping out sanitation workers who were on strike in Memphis. He was trying to communicate the value of helping others over self. His passion and ability to communicate moved millions.
As he spoke it dawned on me that without Martin Luther King Jr. there would most likely not be a Barack Obama.
King and others made sacrifices so that others might reach their potential.
For you folks in your mid-late 20s, Barack presents an avenue for you to express your ideas and and ensure that the future is brighter. Your age group, more than any other, got him elected.
He is your floor general and I really believe will define your generation.